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The Laphroaig Distillery was named after the head of Loch Laphroaig, which is on the southern coast of the Isle of Islay. This Distillery was established in 1815, but was sold to Long John International in the 1960s, making it part of the Allied Domecq and eventually purchased by Fortune Brands in 2005, says Wikipedia.
While the brand has indeed changed hands over the last few decades, Laphroaig is known for their fine whiskeys and single malt scotch. In fact, their varieties are labeled as some of the most flavorful, with most aged a minimum of 10 years, and some aging as many as 40 years.
On their website, they boast that the three most important ingredients in their whiskey are barley, water, and yeast, but they also highlight that the people behind their scotch are what makes it unique and rare.
About the Distilleries
The distillery has been in operation for over 200 years, and the employees and families associated with the distillery are dedicated to creating the most distinctive taste in their single malt scotch. They use family traditions and ancient techniques, and today visitors can tour the distillery online.
The Royal Family has even visited the distillery. In 2015, Prince Charles came to the distillery for his third visit in 25 years. Also, the Duke of Rothesay has visited the distillery and even provided them with a plaque for the Friends of Laphroaig.
What is the Cask Strength of Laphroaig?
All scotch from Laphroaig is made in seasoned oak barrels that are then charred before filled. This creates a vanilla nut-like flavor to the whiskey. The original cask strength was barrier-filtered to remove char present, which means the whiskey is made just as they intended it to taste.
Exploring the Laphroaig 10-Year Old
The original is distilled the same way it is today. To make the 10-year, the barley is first malted over a peat fire. The smoke, which is only found on the Islay, is what gives this brand its distinct taste.
Those who purchase the 10-year old get a bold, smoky flavor that has hints of seaweed and sweet. It is delightful, full-bodied, and features a long finish that makes it perfect for sipping.
The 10-year has received numerous awards in its time, including the 2013 SF World Spirits Competition Double Gold, 2013 International Spirits Challenge Silver Medal, and the 2008 IWSC Silver Medal and Best in Class.
Exploring the Laphroaig 18-Year Old
The 18-Year is only made is limited quantities, and it is designed to be savored and appreciated. It comes with the soft and spicy flavors of peak smoke the moment the bottle is opened. Then, there is an oak-based sweetness that comes from resting for 18 years in the barrel. Because it was created on the isle, the hints of seaweed and salt linger on the tongue.
This 18-Year whiskey is exceptional, balanced, and warm. It has a smoothness about it that perfectly presents the fruits and dried spices it is known for. There is a hint of creamy toffee and heather, along with the smoothness of chocolate.
Using Laphroaig Whiskeys
Due to the exceptional flavor and body of these whiskeys, only certain cocktails are made using them.
Some popular Laphroaig cocktails include:
- Bernet Frankenstein: Includes the scotch, sweet vermouth, mint, and Fernet Branca.
- Shift Drink 6/25: Includes the scotch, aquavit, sweet vermouth, and cardamaro.
- The Smoked Jack Rabbit: Includes the whiskey, lemon juice, maple syrup, Applejack, orange cream, and Kosher salt.
- 100-Year-Old Cigar: Includes the whiskey, absinthe, cynar, rum, and Benedictine.
- Red Hook Burning: A classic cocktail featuring Campari, sweet vermouth, scotch, maraschino liquor, salt, and blood orange bitters.
- Velvet Smoking Jacket: A classic cocktail first debuted in New York, New York. Includes scotch, velvet falernum, and mescal combined with a dash of orange bitters and lemon peel.
- The Scottish Cringe: Created by the Cure in New Orleans, this cocktail features the Islay scotch, whole egg, lime juice, simple syrup, and watermelon cubes for a refreshing garnish.
- Kachelofen: Get a classic comfort from this New York cocktail that is designed for brisk fall nights and cold winters. It includes orange liqueur, Grand Marnier, orange peel for garnish, and the scotch.
- The Islay Word: Another classic created in New York, featuring a tart, herbaceous finish. Includes lime wheel garnishments, lime juice, maraschino liqueur, chartreuse, and a fine strainer.